Posts in the Exchange studies category

International Coordinator, Mirja Onduso and Communicator, Andruta Ilie started organizing a series of Finnish activities at TAMK for international students who study or do their exchange at Tampere University of Applied Sciences. The aim of this project is to introduce students to the Finnish lifestyle while connecting with each other and developing friendships.

Turku is Finland’s first city and also its first capital. A vibrant trading hub and centre for administration, for centuries Turku was a gateway for much that influenced Finland.

After deciding to take our students on a road trip once a month, I created a poll in our group and asked them to vote which cities and towns they would like to visit. Turku was one the first options and easily accessible via Onnibus. So I went ahead and purchased my bus tickets and confirmed with them the best timetable and all our journey details. I was thrilled to see six students at our meeting point in Kaleva, Tampere.

At our arrival in Turku, we stopped to grab some breakfast and coffee from a Hesburger restaurant located next to the bus stop. From there, we walked all the way to Turku Cathedral, which is regarded as Finland’s most valuable historical monumental building. Following the walking tour from the cathedral to Turku Castle, we enjoyed the beautiful sights of river Aura, only to reach its end and the beginning of the sea. Here, we came across Forum Marinum, a national specialist museum, naval museum and event centre with a fascinating story told by its exhibitions. We went inside and experienced the history of Finnish Navy.

Located at about a ten-minute walk from Forum Marinum, is Turku Castle, an important piece of architectural history and a cultural tourism destination. Through its history, the castle has functioned as a defensive fortress, luxurious residential palace, administrative centre, prison, granary and garrison. After exploring the castle, we all walked back to the city centre and came across an international food market with delicacies inviting to taste.

It was my first time in Turku and it felt great to be able to share this experience with TAMK students.

Below are some impressions sent to me by Anni Chen, Chinese degree student in International Business:

"Yesterday we went on a road trip to Turku and it was the first time I visited there, so did everyone else. We were all excited about the trip even though the weather was cold and windy. We first went to Forum Marinum museum which had lots of ship models and real boats in it. It was spectacular and awesome. Then we visited the famous Turku Castle and the whole experience in the castle reminded me of the movie "The Maze Runner". The castle is so huge and it took a while  to go through it. It was like an adventure where we looked on the map and figured out which way to go. After that, we headed to the city centre and ran into an international food market. Since some of us would leave Turku at 16:45 and others would leave at 20:00, we separated the group into two. My friend and I, together with Andruta went downtown and looked around for a little bit, then found a good Mexican restaurant to have dinner. We had so much fun during the trip and hope we can have more trips like this in the future!"










Text: Andruta Ilie

Photos: Anni Chen & Andruta Ilie



International Coordinator, Mirja Onduso and Communicator, Andruta Ilie started organizing a series of Finnish activities at TAMK for international students who study or do their exchange at Tampere University of Applied Sciences. The aim of this project is to introduce students to the Finnish lifestyle while connecting with each other and developing friendships.

With more than 2,000,000 saunas in Finland, it’s no surprise they have become entwined in the national culture. In the past, people used saunas as places to wash during long winters and even to give birth to children.

Experiencing a Finnish sauna would not be complete without a dip or a swim into the lake so we wanted our international students to get a real feel of it by visiting one of the public saunas located in Tampere. Rauhaniemi sauna is easy to access thanks to buses going there all the time from TAMK’s main campus. Outside the sauna, there is the biggest lake in the Tampere area, called Nasijarvi.

Tatiana Antunes is an exchange student from Portugal studying Nursing who was so delighted with the sensation, that she went into the water eight times:

"On October 21st, we went to Rauhaniemi public sauna to have a real experience of Finnish sauna and then go directly into the water and swim. It was a cloudy and grey day, air temperature was 3ºC and  water temperature 7ºC. To me, someone who comes fromsouthern Europe, it was cold, however it did not change my mind about swimming.

After a long time spent in the sauna, the whole group went straight into the water and swam. The feeling was superb! As soon as I left the water, I felt more alive and refreshed, being capable of perfectly handling perfectly the outside temperature just dressed in a swimming suit. I was so delighted with the sensation that I went into the water seven more times! The entire group loved the experience! Right now, we are even more involved within the Finish culture. It was an amazing day to remember!

P.S.: The secret is: don't overthink, just go immediately into the water!"


Text: Andruta Ilie

Photos: Mirja Onduso



International Coordinator, Mirja Onduso and Communicator, Andruta Ilie started organizing a series of Finnish activities at TAMK for international students who study or do their exchange at Tampere University of Applied Sciences. The aim of this project is to introduce students to the Finnish lifestyle while connecting with each other and developing friendships.

Tampere Art Museum Moominvalley is a museum devoted to original works by writer and artist, Tove Jansson. Its unique collection comprise around 2,000 works including sketches, drawings and miniatures of the most famous Finnish characters.

With Moominvalley closing its doors on the 30th of October, 2016 to become Moomin Museum in the spring of 2017, we didn’t want our exchange students to miss the opportunity to see their beloved characters before going back to their home countries. Furthermore, we set up a meeting outside the entrance of the museum on Saturday, 15th of October and together, we not only explored Moominvalley, but also the exhibition “In Search of Humanity” showcasing sculptures, medal art, drawings and painting by pioneering Finnish female sculptor, Essi Renvall.

Anni Chen from China is doing her degree in International Business at Tampere University of Applied Sciences and she’s one of the attendees of the event. A big fan of the Moomins, Anni sent us some impressions and photos.

"We went to Tampere Art Museum and Moominvalley, which was so great because, even though I've stayed here in Tampere for more than one year, I still haven't really visited there yet and I am also a big fan of the Moomins. The sculptures in the art museum were so beautiful and vivid, we took some pictures of them but when we went to Moominvalley, we weren't allowed to take photos which was a pity because Moomins are so cute. However, there was a place where we could take photos together and I even got to hold a big Moomin stuffed toy! That was super cute!"












Text: Andruta Ilie

Photos: Anni Chen & Andruta Ilie


TAMK Ambassadors come from various degree programmes and national backgrounds, allowing them to showcase the TAMK student experience from many different viewpoints and create a truly international experience for visitors.

Let's start with introducing you to Tengfei Liu, an exchange student from China who studies Paper Technology at Tampere University of Applied Sciences. Here's how Tengfei describes himself:
"I am an outgoing person, fond of getting to make new friends. I really like TAMK and appreciate this great chance to be an ambassador of TAMK. Let me show you around and introduce you to our amazing TAMK. Are you ready?"



From China also comes Dandan Hou, another one of our exchange students. She really enjoys her stay in Finland and the beautiful nature here. 
"Hi! I'm Dandan Hou and I study Chemical and Process Engineering at TAMK. I really enjoy my stay in Finland. I love forests and nature. I like hiking, running and sleeping. Sometimes I go hiking in the forest with my friends. I really enjoy it. But I have never been to the forest alone, because it’s easy for me to get lost."



Our next ambassador is Qinning Wan and he's also an exchange student from China. Qinning has a background in Applied Chemistry back in his home university and he chose to study Paper Technology with us. You could say Qinning has succeeded in adopting a Finnish lifestyle, given his hobbies: 
"I like playing musical instruments and watching drums TV in my spare time. Besides, swimming is also one of my habits, which is a really exciting workout for keeping fit. I am pretty interested to be a TAMK ambassador and introduce specific information about TAMK to those who need it."


We'll stick for a bit to the biggest continent in this world, but this time with a different country, Vietnam. Linh Nguyen is doing her degree in Energy and Environmental Engineering and she is on a mission:
"I am a 19-year-old cute Vietnamese girl. I love forests, animals and TAMK! TAMK is my sweet home. I want to tell everyone about its beauty! Let's 'TAMK' together!"


Yen Bui comes from Vietnam as well and she is an International Business Tutor Student. She describes herself as a catholic and daydreamer and is very passionate about dancing:
"I love dancing the most. Hip-hop dance is the best thing I ever do in my life. It’s never wrong to say that music can help people to heal their souls. I have started dancing when I was 14, and from that time on, music has always been my best friend."


We're getting closer to home, but not until we greet one of our neighbours. Ivan Denisenko is a first-year student of the Energy and Environmental Engineering double degree programme. He's originally from Vyborg, Russia and he's the right guy to contact for musical collaborations.
"Active and willing to support different kind of social work, I decided to join the TAMK Ambassadors team to bring some of my ideas to life and also help TAMK with my own labour and enthusiasm. More than that, to me it's a great opportunity to get to know many people, both those who are with me in this team and those who I will help as part of my duties. I also write music, sing and play the guitar, so if you have any interesting musical cooperation ideas or need a person for a band, contact me at any time."


We now reached home with our last, but not the least TAMK Ambassador, Elina Eskola. Elina is a Business Information Systems student who enjoys travelling, exploring new places and meeting new people. And she has quite an unusual and interesting favourite hobby...
"I love spending my time either playing, reading or doing various different sports. Aerial fitness is my favourite."



Best of luck to our TAMK Ambassadors and we can’t wait to hear more about their duties and achievements!

Read more here:




International Coordinator, Mirja Onduso and Communicator, Andruta Ilie started organizing a series of Finnish activities at TAMK for international students who study or do their exchange at Tampere University of Applied Sciences. The aim of this project is to introduce students to the Finnish lifestyle while connecting with each other and developing friendships.

With a picturesque location beside the Tammerkoski rapids, Vapriikki is a museum centre hosting a dozen exhibitions each year, with varied themes, including history, technology, and natural sciences. Vapriikki is also home to the Natural History Museum of Tampere, the Media Museum Rupriikki, the Mineral Museum, the Finnish Hockey Hall of Fame, the Doll Museum and the Postal Museum.

And what better way to spend a Friday afternoon if not with a museum visit? Especially that on Fridays, between 15:00 and 18:00, the museum is free of charge. Our students said yes without hesitations. Together we explored the Postal Museum: Secret Mail of Finnish Jaeger Troops and two more exhibitions: “Narrative Thread-the 10th TEXO triennial of textile art” and “Hurriganes: Rock Revolution in Finland”.

Le Thanh Tung, a first-year student from Vietnam doing his degree in Environmental Engineering at TAMK, attended all our events so far and here's what he thought about the museum:
"My first impression of the museum is that is well-organised. Secondly, is keeping the balance between old and new with the exhibitions. Lastly, the museum is using a lot of modern technology, which is impressive. It was a really interesting experience and I had a wonderful time there."

Text: Andruta Ilie

Photos: Le Thanh Tung & Andruta Ilie

International Coordinator, Mirja Onduso and Communicator, Andruta Ilie started organizing a series of Finnish activities at TAMK for international students who study or do their exchange at Tampere University of Applied Sciences. The aim of this project is to introduce students to the Finnish lifestyle while connecting with each other and developing friendships.

Although we were planning to take our students to pick the last berries from the woods for our third event, we had to change the plan in the last minute due to poor weather conditions. So we stayed in Y-Campus and had an open discussion about TAMK and Tampere. According to our students, the international atmosphere at Tampere University of Applied Sciences is so great, that a three-month exchange period is too short. Some other pros and cons were written down as you will see in the image below.


Text & photos: Andruta Ilie

International Coordinator, Mirja Onduso and Communicator, Andruta Ilie started organizing a series of Finnish activities at TAMK for international students who study or do their exchange at Tampere University of Applied Sciences. The aim of this project is to introduce students to the Finnish lifestyle while connecting with each other and developing friendships.

First event, “Board games & baking pulla” took place in Tamko, on Friday, 16.09. Here’s the feedback we received from one of our international students from Mexico:

"Our first Finnish activity is done! We had a really pleasant time baking pulla and having fun with board games. We even invented some new games as well. The activity took place at Tamko and there were students from Vietnam, China, Uruguay, Spain, Costa Rica, Japan, Greece and other countries. 

First, we introduced ourselves and made teams to start preparing for the recipe that Mirja gave us. Each team followed the instructions and others were just experimenting. But in the end, we had the same dough for pulla. Before continuing baking, we had to leave the dough rest for an hour. Meanwhile, Mirja created a "Game of Names" due to the fact that each of us had special and difficult names to pronounce, apart from the easy ones. We laughed about it and got back to the kitchen, where the next step was to give a form to the dough and get some pullas into the oven. While we waited for them to bake, we played board games such as Bang!,Twister and a new one invented by Mery, one of the students from Uruguay.

You ever know what opportunities you will miss if you don't get out of your comfort zone and join our next Finnish activity. We would be glad to meet you! Save the date for the next activity! I'm sure you will have a great time!"

Gabriela Velázquez, IB exchange student from Escuela Bancaria y Comercial (EBC), Mexico

Let's start!

Board games

Board games1Chess



Photos: Mirja Onduso


Summer School 2016 (22 of 170)Hegi Rezhda from Greece, Seung Yub Shin from South Korea and Julia Seitz from Germany at Viikinsaari island.

For several years, Tampere University of Applied Sciences has organized a summer course for Basics of Finnish. This course has been very popular among exchange and international students. This year, the course was held for the first time by lecturer Ella Hakala from TAMK’s language services.

Getting to know Finland during the first week

Summer School 2016 (10 of 170)Viikinsaari island trip included a nature path tour with Michel Faas

Basics of Finnish started with an easy atmosphere, as most of the students had just arrived to Finland in the first week of August. Short introductions and basic details about the course were presented before the hard dive into Finnish language started. The course aimed to familiarize students with Finnish culture and give them the basic knowledge of an European language level of A1 in Finnish.

Viikinsaari was the location for the first cultural activity of the course. It is an idyllic nature sight to see in Tampere. The ferry goes very often to the Viikinsaari island during the summer time and the lake Pyhäjärvi is nice to see during the half an hour trip. Once everyone arrived to Viikinsaari, the tour guide, Michel Faas started by explaining what the place was and how Finnish culture felt to a foreigner living in Finland for many years. Michel is originally from the Netherlands and has been working during TAMK’s summer courses very often.

Summer School 2016 (28 of 170)Anett Galántai, Sushma Birdarkote Keshavamurthy, Emma Thirkell, Helena Gregerová, international coordinator Camilla Kalevo, Kehdriah Pearse, Regina Schröter, Hegi Rezhda, Julia Seitz, Razieh Zare, Charikleia Sakellari, Sebastian Roßkopf, Seung Yub Shin and International Services Trainee, Aleksi Jolkkonen with Dino, the dog.

Viikinsaari was one of the many activities offered during the first week of the course. Second great adventure was the kickbiking tour around Kauppi with Michel Faas and a bowling evening on Friday.

Summer School 2016 (41 of 170)The kickbikes went quite fast on downhill! Helena Gregérova is having a go with it!

The kickbiking gave an even better view to the Finnish nature and culture, as there was a traditional cooking with fire and the much loved sauna. The tour ended at  Kaupinojan Sauna, where students had their first experience in a public lake and after, in a sauna. There are actually quite many of these around Finland and Tampere. Rauhaniemen Kansankylpylä is another other option near Kaupinojan Sauna.The tour around Viikinsaari provided the course students with a great idea on how Finns see their nature. Foraging, wondering and being active in the nature is very close to the Finnish way of life. There are great forests everywhere to be explored and visited by anyone traveling around Finland.

Summer School 2016 (47 of 170)There are many sticks in the Finnish forests to be found for cooking purposes

The first week ended quite quick as the program was intense and tight. Daily lectures taught Finnish language and the evening activities gave a glace into the Finnish culture and way of life. Most students had arranged travelling plans for the weekend, and Helsinki was one of the cities they visited. The capital of Finland holds many interesting sights to see. For example, Suomenlinna, which is one of the largest sea fortresses in the world and is also an UNESCO heritage sight.

Second week adventures

Summer School 2016 (123 of 170)It is said that the city of Tampere is the best city in Finland

With the weekend wondering over, it was time to get back to business at TAMK. The Basics of Finnish lecture started every day at 9:15. 15 minutes over is a traditional starting time for Tampere University of Applied Sciences’s lectures. It is often called “akateeminen vartti” or academic quarter in English.

Monday evening was full with adventure, as there was a city challenge with the Action Track application. It is a smartphone app that allows creation of location based tasks for groups or individuals. TAMK has been testing it for multiple purposes, like orientation and self-serviced campus tours. Floworks is in charge of the projects related to Action Track. The track itself had fun tasks related to Tampere, such as going to take a sky-high selfie in the Torni hotel and interviewing a Pokémon player in Finnish, at the Pikkukakkonen playground. The challenge ended with girls’s team winning by arriving earlier at the finish line. However, as it is customary in Finland, everyone received an ice cream in the end.

Summer School 2016 (72 of 170)Even if baking is considered to be very precise and a delicate art of cooking, there can be fun moments too!

Finnish culture isn’t usually known for its food, but there are still some traditional home-cooked dishes. Tuesday’s program was about cooking in Finnish style. Baked goodies, soups and a wide variety of stews are usually cooked at home. The ingredients used are sometimes gathered from the forest or grown in its own garden. Mushrooms and berries, for example are some of the traditional cooking ingredients that Finns forage during summer time.

Summer School 2016 (78 of 170)Dishwashing has never been so fun for Eun Jung Kang and Seung Yub Shin from South Korea.

Cooking is always fun in a group where everyone gets to do something and experience new things together. For the evening’s menu there was: salmon soup, mushroom pie, musta makkara, cinnamon buns, Karelian pasties and egg butter, smoked salmon on rye bread buttons, Finnish squeaky cheese and cloudberry jam. Everyone took a dish to prepare that they wanted to learn. The Karelia pastry team had a very tough job, because Karelia pastries are very traditional and must be made strictly according to the recipe. In spite of the challenge, the pastries came out great!

Summer School 2016 (84 of 170)Karelia pastries looked great and tasted even better!

Wednesday was gone and Thursday arrived with no lectures. There was an “all hands on deck” TAMK day at the campus, so all lectures were cancelled for this purpose. For students, this was a great thing as there was time to go to the Särkänniemi amusement park!

Summer School 2016 (134 of 170)TAMK Ambassador and Tutor, Sami Kaita with students, Julia Seitz, Kendriah Pearse, Emma Thirkell, Anett Galántai, Regina Schröter and Helena Gregérova.

The park is located on a small cape along the Näsijärvi lake. The whole amusement park and city of Tampere can be seen from the top of Näsinneula tower which stands 168 meters tall. It is one of the most recognizable buildings in Tampere and is often seen in every picture representing the city.

Summer School 2016 (151 of 170)The carousel was one of the scariest attractions, but still enjoyable!

The tower is just one of many attractions in Särkänniemi. There are many rides from which to get your dose of adrenaline and a terrifying time. The Tornado rollercoaster is everyone’s favourite classic ride, that has given many fast paced and spinning rides for many years. This year, there was also a new ride called X, which went round and round while spinning. The ride was actually so long, that you got over the initial adrenaline burst and started to get really scared for your life. There were many rides to be tried even if there were a couple of rain showers from time to time. Finnish weather can be quite unpredictable.

Summer School 2016 (159 of 170)After receiving the certificate from Ella Hakala, Seung Yub Shin got some Finnish sweet licorice from Kirsi Jokipakka

These two weeks were some of the most amazing opportunities to experience Finnish culture and traditions in such a short period of time. It was also a “strict” requirement ended in a Finnish way, with coffee and cake. Students from all around the world received their course certificates and warm congratulations from Kirsi Jokipakka, Head of International Services and from Ella Hakala, the new Lecturer for the Basics of Finnish course.


Text & photos: Aleksi Jolkkonen

Picture 1

How can it be ended?

We have been living in Tampere for three months and a half. It could seem a long time but in fact we still have the feeling that out first day was yesterday. How can it be possible? Maybe the reason is that we have been experiencing new situations all time, meeting new people and challenging ourselves with different cultures and different languages. We think everything we’ve lived here has made us grow as persons, which before embarking on this adventure we didn’t thought about it!


Picture 2

Party of Vappu

We know that we are not Finnish but obviously we would like to enjoy typical events from Finland or from Tampere like Party of Vappu. Because of that, all exchange students decided to meet in front of the Tampere’s river, lying on the grass and to watch how new university students are being submerged in the river’s cold water.

What surprised us most was the fact that at the end of the festival all students who organized the event began to collect and clean the park to leave it as it was before any party. In Spain these things do not happen…


Picture 3


Thanks to our Erasmus we have had to opportunity of travelling with marvellous people! One of the incredible trips was Tallinn. It wasn’t the longest one, in fact it was the shortest one, we only spend one night there, but it was enough for many things to happen, starting for the ferry problems, as we had lost the first one because we were at the wrong terminal twice. But at the end we reached Tallinn and we had so much fun during that night there and the journey back to Tampere.


Picture 4

Someone said sauna and ice swimming?


Of course we couldn’t go from Finland without trying the famous sauna and ice swimming! So thanks to our teachers from TAMK we had the opportunity to do it and made our farewell party.

At the beginning the idea of swim in the cold water from the lake of Tampere scare us a little bit but after getting into the hot sauna and sweat a lot we need at least deep us in the cold and good water. So for us it was a great experience, even some of exchange students repeat it more than once! It will be another thing that we will miss when we’ll be back home…


Picture 5

We are going to miss you

Of course we are going to miss you. We are going to miss your lakes, your sunrises, your sunsets, your cold, your forests, your beers and Karl Fazer chocolates. And I remark on Karl Fazer, probably chocolate with milk and strawberries was our favourite one.

Tampere has been the nucleus of our Erasmus and our home for some months. After being travelling for some days and because of that being very tired, we didn’t thought in returning back to Spanish home we were just thinking in returning back to our flat in Tampere, our new home.

Doesn’t anyone share the opinion that have had the feeling that Tampere was home is not the perfect consequence of having had a perfect Erasmus?


Picture 6

Tampere in our retinas

Now we are back in Barcelona, with our family and lifelong friends. Many of these people think we were brave to undertake this wonderful experience and opportunity because they think that these four months we have just travelled, went out for party and made friends around the world.

But only those who have lived the experience as we will know how difficult it has been to solve those problems in college, practices and accommodation in a language that is not ours. Nor they know what it was for us when we saw photos of family and friends having fun, realizing all the moments that we were missing.

But time passes quickly and we realize that all problems have solutions, they are not afraid to take the bus because we use Google maps; we also learn to go to the supermarket and buy only those things we need. We discover that every day is a new adventure.

The most important thing about this experience is that all these challenges can’t be achieved without the help of those special people who’re recognizing throughout the adventure. They end up being your family. Thanks to all these people we are more humble, generous and open to different cultures and ways of thinking.

Time goes too fast, we have learned to make the most of every day, see new places, try different food, but now we are already adapted have to say goodbye. Goodbye to our new friends, favourite places, food we liked, all the memories we have built…

At this point in our Erasmus, we wander among so many feelings that we do not know how to express them. We still longing for people waiting for us at home, more with each passing second. But also we started to miss the new friends that we have not yet fired. Many probably will not ever see them again and the feeling of helplessness that generates is so strong that sometimes do not know if we want or prefer to follow Erasmus forever. In the retina we have stuck the most beautiful corners of Tampere, Helsinki and Tallinn, in the ear a couple of dialects… and in the heart, them. Because during the Erasmus we realize that building our unique experience are not the most beautiful cities on the planet, parties or approved by the face (also good) but the people with whom you share…

So everything depends on us to continue to build new memories in different cities with our new family. Therefore this is not a goodbye but a see you soon!

Kiitos paljon Suomi!


Text and photos: Georgina Ros Branson and Elisabet Ferrando Sanchez


Orientaatio ilta 27,4 (4 of 31)

TAMK Alumni, comedian and improv entertainer, Trent Pancy.

The exchange orientation evening was held on Wednesday, 27.4 to give information about the upcoming experience. Nearly 200 TAMK students are leaving for exchange this autumn, and  the orientation evenings help them prepare for it.


New Orientation Course

Every exchange student goes through the orientation course before his or her departure. There have been many reports and writing tasks to be done before, during and after the exchange. Now, the course has been redone and updated to a different level. The evening begun with Henri Annala giving a presentation on the new course. It’s called “Intercultural Experiences and Competences”. Henri explained the course in the following way:

“The fundamental purpose of this course is to help you enjoy your experience abroad and to provide basic information about intercultural awareness and understanding during your stay there.”

New platforms are used to share information, stories and thoughts among students and teachers. In the past, these platforms were mostly available for the teachers. However, the new approach helps students with any questions they might have before the exchange.

Orientaatio ilta 27,4 (7 of 31)

Trent Pancy explained how Finland differs from other countries. Finns seem to be quite silent…


Different Cultures

Whenever you travel to a new country and get to live there for a while, you start to experience culture shock effects. Trent came to talk about this subject and help with cultural differences. He explained that, everywhere else in the world people do small talk, but Finns don’t. This might be sometimes awkward for other cultures, as Finns are quite silent during conversations. They are reserved and often speak their mind when asked directly. Trent gave an example:

Hey, that’s a nice shirt you have!” and the student answered :“Thank you!”, while someone from USA, like Trent might have continued with “Oh, and by the way, I got it from that shop around the corner and it was really nice. You should totally check it out!”

Trent gave a very funny and interactive presentation about this specific type of talking. He also had one task which was a bit uncomfortable at the beginning, but turned out to be very funny in the end. It was about handshakes. The students were asked to create their very own three part handshake with someone else. As a result, this new handshake was given to the next person and so on, until a twelve-part handshake was formed. This was very hard and fun to do. What everyone learned was the feeling of being brave enough to do something and keep on doing it. Trent told this is the only way to fully experience the different cultures by jumping right in.


Orientaatio ilta 27,4 (13 of 31)

Handshake task started with everyone finding a pair for their lifted hand until there was nobody left out.


Orientaatio ilta 27,4 (19 of 31)

Everyone had a fun time doing their own handshakes. Some of the students were brave enough for the show!


Practical Information

The last part of the evening was about very important practical matters. Krista Merikoski and Eeva Heikkilä came to discuss health related topics, insurances, travel arrangements and general things that need to be known. Different countries have their own recommendations and requirements for health checkups, vaccinations and tests. Some countries might require the students to have their lungs X-rayed, while other countries might have a high risk of dangerous insect bites causing fever and malaria.

Students were advised to check all of their health related matters before the exchange took place. These included for example, dental care and getting the European Health Insurance Card. This card gives them the right to receive the same treatment as natives. Unlike Finland, where the cost of treatment is quite low due to the public health system, there might be bigger costs for treatments abroad. For this, it is advisable to get a good travel insurance which covers medical transport from a foreign country back to the home country. Some of the most affordable insurances might not cover this very expensive transport cost though.

The orientation evening ended with a good atmosphere among the students as they are now feeling more prepared for the autumn exchange.


Text and photos: Aleksi Jolkkonen